Friday, September 12, 2014

pink, unabated

 tank, Gap
skirt, Target
earrings, gift

      Something about having shorter hair makes me reach for my bolder earrings. I had originally planned to wear a necklace instead, but at the last minute decided on statement earrings.  

        I bought this tank for $2.08 in July - I had a $10 rewards that was about to expire. The armholes are a little low and big, so I added a sports bra in lieu of a camisole. I can't wait for it to cool down at work ...  some of my students' families generously donated fans, but even with all the fans going full blast, on a hot day it just means we have a lot of warm steamy air circulating. It can be challenging to put together a heat-ready but professional outfit! I did give in last Wednesday and wear Bermuda shorts with a tee, with a necklace thrown on to make it look a little fancier.
     What are your plans for the weekend? I have the usual lesson planning to do and piles of student papers to look through. However, I am looking forward to a few naps, a glass of wine or two, and some quality time with a novel. I  also hope to hunt down the September Vogue issue!

Monday, September 8, 2014

just sitting

BCBG Max Azria silk top, thrifted
DKNY jeans, Macy's
necklace, Forever 21

       Another simple outfit to deal with the heat while looking somewhat put-together ...
      A month into the new school year, I'm feeling pretty settled into my routine, although as usual, I would like to work on getting to bed earlier. Waking up at 5 a.m. is always challenging when you're a night owl! My main motivation for getting to bed earlier is that I'd like a little more meditation time. I find that my thoughts slow down and I get really settled after about 8 minutes of sitting, and guess how long I can afford to sit in the morning? 8 minutes. You see the problem ...  
    After a great deal of thought, I decided to share my personal practice with my students. At first I was reading this book to get some ideas, but it made me feel overwhelmed and doubtful that I knew enough to even get started. So I returned the book to the library, added it to my Amazon wish list for future reading, and forged on with what (little) I know. 
     Most days we do "breathing exercise" after our morning meeting. I deliberately chose to not call it "meditation" because I worried that I would get complaints about my teaching religion. I found a singing bowl for a great price (unfortunately, the price was so good because the store is closing this month, but it was a lucky find for a teacher on a budget), and we ring it to start and end our breathing. The students expressed interest in ringing the bowl, so I've started choosing one person each day to do so. Most of my students do it with me, some don't, but I don't force anyone to participate. I was heartened, however, when I forgot to do it on Friday and one of my students reminded me! I truly hope that this is a life skill my students can take with them that will help them be more focused, resilient, and peaceful. 
      p.s.: My classroom's Donors Choose project is alive! If you feel inspired to help, your donation will be doubled ($100 limit) if you enter the code INSPIRE and donate by Sept. 14. I won't make a regular habit out of touting my classroom fund-raising projects in this space, but this is my first time using Donors Choose and I thought I'd put it out there just this once ...

Monday, August 25, 2014


Style & Co. ruched-side tee, Jolt black pants, necklace - Macy's
Gap belt, thrifted

    This is one of those outfits that I liked while wearing it ... then I came home, took a few photos, and realized I'm undecided on side-ruched tees. I think the bunched fabric around the middle can be unflattering from certain angles.

    A few snippets from everyday life with 25 fourth-graders:
  •     The wording "at least" stymies them. I wrote on the board recently that they needed to answer "at least" 3 questions, and was asked by multiple students how many they needed to do.
  •     I was reading to the class from a book and they asked how old it was. I checked the publication date and it was from 2002. This was deemed "pretty old."
  •     A weird-looking bug crawled into our room on Thursday and caused quite a commotion during language arts. I ended up grabbing a broom and swooshing it out the door into the grass outside. (One of my students offered to stomp on it, but in the classroom I am a bug pacifist.)
      A white tee  is always touted as a closet essential, but I've found that for some reason mine go unworn. My colored and patterned tees seem to be the ones I reach for first. I like the idea of them - so simple! - but in reality I think I avoid them because I worry that they're too plain. However, with this outfit I think the necklace and belt made this outfit look a little more pulled together.

    Monday, August 11, 2014

    animal-print overload

    Xhilaration top, Target
    D&Y scarf, Ross
    bone necklace, Seattle craft fair
    linen shorts, Macy's
            Just a quick iPhone photo because I thought this was pretty cute for a weekend outfit ... who knew that flamingos and animal print mixed so well?
           This top was included in my July budget, but not pictured. When I looked it up on the Target site, I was amused to see that it described as a crop top. It is definitely not a crop top on me! I suppose being short-waisted has its (few) benefits?
           My sis is in town for a little more than a week, which means we spent part of Sunday ambling around the mall. I found a cute pair of pants and a lightweight cotton shirt that I'm excited about wearing. I'm a little bummed that our summer schedules didn't coincide, but as my colleague pointed out, having family in town just gives me more incentive to leave work on time so I can enjoy some quality time at home.
        ** Hurricane update: I am so thankful that my island was spared. Hurricane Iselle did knock down some very large trees and cause flooding and power outages on other islands, so we were lucky to get off so easily - Friday was cloudy and humid, but that was it. The second storm, Julio, has veered far off and should result in larger surf but nothing else.

    Wednesday, August 6, 2014

    July budget: in the pink

    tank, $2.08 (used $10 rewards), Gap
    black maxi skirt, $8.99, Ross
    Maison Jules tee, $14.82, Macy's

    not pictured:
    Kensie top, $13.99, Ross
    Xhilaration flamingo-print crop top, $10.48, Target
    elodie crochet tank,  $17, Nordstrom Rack

    TOTAL: $77.36
    BUDGET: $50
    OVER: $27.36

        I have never considered myself one of those women who adores pink, but ... look at my purchases this month. Two of my not-pictured items are pink as well. I'm not thrilled that I went over budget (again!), but I figure that at least I added an under-represented color to my closet and just about every item can be worn for work. Yes, even the crop top ... I guess having a short torso has its benefits. I didn't even know that it was meant to be a crop top until I looked it up on the Target web site and saw it described as such. It is a perfectly acceptable length on me, and who doesn't think flamingos are fun?
         Belatedly linking up with Franish's Budgeting Bloggers!

    hunkering down

    J. Crew linen dress, Savers
    XOXO sports bra worn as camisole, Ross
    necklace, Haitian Beads 

          Hawaii has two hurricanes heading this way in the next few days, and everyone is on high alert. Most stores are sold out of cases of bottled water and toilet paper. I dropped by a drugstore on my way to work, foolishly thinking that there might be regular 16-ounce bottles of water. I had forgotten my metal bottle at home, and just wanted one to drink through the school day. There was not a single bottle on the shelves, and I saw several people with multiple rolls of paper towels (maybe a substitute for the elusive toilet paper?) I settled for no-calorie grapefruit-flavored sparkling water instead.              
          Driving home, I heard that the city is canceling bus service on Friday, when the first hurricane is scheduled to hit our island. I'm hoping that the public school system plays it safe and cancels school Friday. I don't live close to work, and the thought of driving through high winds and heavy rains makes me (an already anxious driver) even more anxious.
    Hey,  my hair almost looks shiny in this photo!

            A little about this outfit: I liked this outfit because I stayed cool and felt professional and stylish. Using a sports bra as a camisole made a tangible difference. My Haitian beads also picked up the color of the dress beautifully and made the outfit feel polished and intentional. I particularly like the sparks of bright yellow against the fuchsia. 


    Tuesday, August 5, 2014

    high hopes

          Whoo, I wasn't expecting to have my summer break be a blog break as well, but I will try to get a post up or two once the start-of-school-year madness subsides.
           In the meantime, here's a picture of my new hairdo! Longer hair has been my security blanket for a while, but I am thoroughly enjoying this haircut. My workplace is very warm, and having my hair this short forces me to wear it down vs. having it up in a ponytail all the time. Also loving how easy it is to wash and that I don't really have to do anything in the morning. I'm still trying to adjust my sleep schedule to make waking up at 5 a.m. a little less arduous, so a low-maintenance hairstyle means a little more time to eat breakfast and prepare for the day.

          While it's only the first week of school, I have a feeling this is going to be a very different year. First off, this group's energy seems very different from last year's bunch.  I loved last year's kids, but their energy was frenetic at times. This group seems a little more laid-back. I am also trying out the Responsive Classroom approach, which means I have been explicitly teaching social skills, building community, and teaching classroom routines/procedures in a different way. I admit that I'll miss all the free time I had during the summer, but it's exciting to be in a classroom again.
       What's making you happy lately?